Obama: Power plant rule will shrink power prices
WASHINGTON (AP) - In a sweeping initiative to curb pollutants blamed for global warming, the Obama administration unveiled a plan Monday aimed at cutting carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by nearly a third by 2030. But it delays the deadline for some states to begin complying until long after President Barack Obama leaves office.
The 645-page plan, expected to be finalized next year, is a centerpiece of Obama’s efforts to deal with climate change and seeks to give the United States more leverage to prod other countries to act when negotiations on a new international treaty resume next year.
Under the plan, carbon emissions are to be reduced 30 percent from 2005 levels, in what would amount to one of the most significant U.S. actions on global warming.
Europe weighs risks of negative interest rates
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) - The European Central Bank could be going negative soon.
Among the more unusual steps the central bank is considering this week to boost the eurozone’s recovery is cutting to below zero the interest rate it pays on money that banks deposit with it. That effectively means banks would have to pay to park money with the ECB - an unorthodox move that has had some success in neighboring Denmark but hasn’t been attempted in the much larger eurozone.
The goal: Push banks to lend that money to companies and consumers to get the economy moving.
The ECB, the eurozone’s chief monetary authority, has been resisting such a step, which it considered as long ago as summer 2012 but which President Mario Draghi dismissed then as “largely uncharted waters.”
New allergy tablets offer alternative to shots
TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - For decades, seasonal allergy sufferers had two therapy options to ease the misery of hay fever. They could swallow pills or squirt nasal sprays every day for brief reprieves from the sneezing and itchy eyes. Or they could get allergy shots for years to gradually reduce their immune system’s over-reaction.
Now patients can try another type of therapy to train their immune system, new once-a-day tablets that dissolve quickly under the tongue and steadily raise tolerance to grass or ragweed pollen, much like the shots.